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Nicola Burkinshaw: Private Tutor

Welcome to my website! I am a private tutor specialising in English, history as well as more general learning skills such as critical thinking and revision. I have been teaching in and out of classrooms for more than twenty years and have worked with both children and adults. My focus is on building good habits and techniques to help students absorb knowledge and communicate it effectively. I have high expectations but my focus is always on progress over perfection. Lessons are a mixture of engaging technology and traditional teaching and learning, always tailored towards the particular student.

While inevitably many of my students come to me for support in preparation for exams, for many it is also an opportunity to build on their cultural capital and engage in wider study of the arts and humanities. Students are encouraged to read and research beyond the curriculum and are given the skills to do this effectively and critically.

Although all my lessons are online, I pride myself on the positive relationships I build with my students and their parents. Technology means I can be available to students around the world and provide a range of easily accessible learning materials but also means that we are able to show off our pets to each other! 

If you think your child would benefit from tuition with me, please do drop me an email or a WhatsApp. Alternatively, do take a look at the subject specific pages which contain a range of materials that you are welcome to use with your child.


Over the last eight years of tutoring I have worked with a wide range of students: from those with severe learning difficulties to some who have gone to Oxbridge to continue their literary education. My focus is on clear, precise communication and the development of careful, analytical reading skills. Students learn the importance of the right word at the right time and the joy of poetic language used with flair.


Although I do tutor students through exams, I also offer more generalised tuition that encourages a love of reading and develops writing that is interesting, accurate and complex. 


An understanding of history is fundamental to understanding the world in which we live today. While students need to learn about the people and events of the past, they also need to learn how to analyse causes and evaluate significance. History lessons are an energetic, exciting mix of knowledge and skill development and students are always encouraged to learn beyond the specification to improve their understanding.

I tutor students at both GCSE and A Level and have covered most topics at some point! I have a particular interest in the first half of the twentieth century and am currently working on research on eighteenth and nineteenth century Britain.

Learning Skills

Revision is important but knowing how to revise effectively is vital. I work with students to develop their time management skills, learn how to prioritise and introduce them to new revision techniques that ensure they progress.

Critical Thinking

It has been said that we are living in an age of intellectual obesity: there is information galore available to us but we tend to pick up the easily digestible, unchallenging stuff that floats around on the internet. In my new course I am offering students the opportunity to develop the skills to properly interrogate arguments and ideas; to research effectively and to recognise the difference between fact and belief. 

Drop me an email if you'd like to know more or schedule a Zoom chat.


Eliza, Student

Nicola is a fabulous tutor. She tutored me from year 11 for English through to the end of year 13 for both English and History. Not only is she incredibly kind and such a lovely person, she was very patient if I was struggling to understand something, and would ask questions around the topics I struggled on to help me formulate an understanding and opinion. I cannot reccomend her highly enough.

Sarah, Parent

Nicola was an absolute life saver for my son's GCSEs. She is very positive and a fantastic teacher who gave my son such confidence. She is an excellent teacher and knows the syllabus backwards, teaching my son in history and english. My son has always hated english and after being taught by her first the first time he said it made sense. I would highly recommend Nicola.

Susannah, Parent

My 14 year old son really looks forward to his lessons with Nicola. She is encouraging, organised and clear in what she asks of him. She understands his needs and has an excellent level of subject expertise. Knowing that she has experience of examining is very reassuring in these uncertain times, also.

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